Thursday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

Automotive

by Karl Greenberg

Edmunds.com is predicting a 1.24 million unit month, a 16.5% increase from last March and a 25.1% increase from February this year. The firm predicts that unless GM managed to pull a rabbit out of the hat during the past week or Ford hit speed bumps because of inventory constraints due to supply shortfall from Japan, Ford may overtake GM in monthly sales for only the second time since 1998.< …Read the whole story >>

Retail

by Sarah Mahoney

Walmart retains its position as the most valuable retail brand for the third consecutive year, according to the Interbrand ranking, despite an 8% drop in its valuation. “U.S. same-store sales have suffered a slight decrease, an indication that customers are spreading their spending to other stores as the economy recovers,” the report notes. …Read the whole story >>

Airlines

by Tanya Irwin

The campaign, which breaks April 1, includes online, print and radio and will highlight the distinctive characteristics of each region within the airline’s expanding worldwide network. Radio ads were completed in several languages. …Read the whole story >>

Automotive

by Karl Greenberg

New Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) and greenhouse gas (GHG) rules may well require automakers to achieve fleet fuel economy of at least 42 miles per gallon (mpg) by 2020, though automakers are pushing back on that, emboldened as Congress has taken a sharp right turn. Automakers have become more vocal in arguing that they need more time. …Read the whole story >>

Restaurants

by Aaron Baar

During the period from March 9 to March 24, when the ad was in heavy rotation during the NCAA Basketball Tournament, the brand’s buzz score, which measures a positive vs. negative response to a brand, dropped from a high of 44.1 (on a scale of -100 to 100, with 0 being neutral) to 17.3 on March 24. …Read the whole story >>

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10 Reasons Your Business needs to go Social

I write and edit 4 full time blog sites including this one. Over 50 new stories every week generate around 12,000 views per month.

The newest site is titled ScLoHo’s Social Media Adventure and is updated 5 days a week at noon.

Click here to go there.

And from MarketingProfs.com comes this story as to why this matters:

Ten Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore Social Media

Plenty of businesses thought social media was a passing fad—something that would dazzle everyone for a brief time and disappear. But as the Facebooks and Twitters show staying power, Christine Whittemore says many skeptics have come to the conclusion that traditional methods of attracting customers are no longer enough.

“They’ve noticed their mothers online, their friends using mobile devices to share YouTube videos, or even a co-worker circulating an insightful blog article about business innovation,” she writes at MarketingProfs Daily Fix blog. “They’re wondering how might this make sense for their businesses. Will it allow them to connect with customers?”

She believes the answer is yes—and suggests 10 ways your company can benefit from social media:

  1. You demonstrate to potential customers that you are human and care about their world.
  2. You bring to life an externally focused mindset.
  3. You to bring to life your otherwise static brochure-like website with a dynamic presence.
  4. You address in a public forum the questions and concerns your customers have about your products and services—which are being asked anyway without your participation.
  5. You participate in the conversations taking place that relate to your business, products, industry—and have the opportunity to shape the agenda.
  6. You manage your reputation.
  7. You build a customer community.
  8. You direct prequalified prospects—with whom you’ve already established a relationship—to your website, so you can engage in business.
  9. You build your digital visibility and online presence.
  10. You remain relevant to customers.

The Po!nt: It’s really simple. If your customers use social media, you need to be there, too.

Source: MarketingProfs Daily Fix.

New Ad Campaigns

From Amy:

A promiscuous alley cat, mini-giraffes for sale and MINI, the car, goes 3D. Let’s launch!

GE launched a hysterical video that sheds light on one of the mysteries of life: where do missing socks go? A PSA for L.O.S.S. (Laundered and Orphaned Sock Society) shows the group holding a peaceful protest outside a laundromat to educate passersby about this serious problem. Pedestrians pass by the cheery clipboard-holding volunteers, uninterested in signing a petition. Volunteers chant: “They live in shoes, but socks are people, too.” They carry quirky signs: “This socks,” “Lint free or Die” and “Vicious Cycle.” The society leader gets arrested. The video, seen here, drives users to SockLoss.com, where the “GE Center for Advanced Laundry Studies” answers sock-saving questions. Feel free to design a missing sock flyer, and enter a sweepstakes for a GE washer and dryer. Lbi created the video.

Keeping with dryer issues, Farmers Insurance launched “Dryer Fire,” illustrating, on an extreme level, how lint balls can cause massive problems for homeowners. Clean your lint filters! Training exercises take place at the University of Farmers, with Professor Nathaniel Burk, played by actor J.K. Simmons, at the helm. To demonstrate how 15,000 dryer fires occur yearly, Professor Burk takes a flamethrower to an oversized lint ball he crafted himself. See the ad here, created by RPA.

The Tokyo, Canada and Singapore offices of BBDO/Proximity created 1000Cranes4Japan.org, a site where users can create a message, placed on an origami crane, to those affected by the earthquake and tsunami. The site’s origin comes from a Japanese legend where anyone who folds a thousand origami cranes will be granted a wish by a crane, such as recovery from illness. Visitors can add their messages of prayers and support and donate to the Japanese Red Cross.

Meet Smutley, an alley cat that sleeps with any animal he encounters. Smutley is part of an online campaign for AIDES, a French non-profit that encourages safe sex. “Protect yourself” also includes print and out-of-home elements, all promoting condom use. The online video stars Smutley in a black-and-white cartoon reminiscent of the “Steamboat Willie” era, until Joan Jett & the Blackhearts’ “Bad Reputation” starts playing. Smutley comes across a turtle, rabbit, dolphin, seals, a roasting pig and elephant, to name a few, and he loves them all equally. “He’s got nine lives. You only have one. Protect yourself,” closes the video, shown here. In addition, a series of comic strips were created to encourage condom use. Illustrated by Nathan Fox, Cristiano Siqueria and Mike Kazaleh, each comic drives traffic to blahblahblahblah.org, a soon-to-launch Web site that offers tools and tips for talking about condoms with your partner. See the comics here, here, here, here and here, but be warned that they are NSFW. The final component of the campaign is a detailed map of a fictional theme park called SexLand, illustrated by Rod Hunt. The NSFW map, shown here and here, will be distributed in magazines and to the visitors of the Museum of Sex in New York. Goodby, Silverstein & Partners created the campaign.

The League Against Cancer (Liga Contra Cancer) launched a trio of print ads where adults and kids are shown shielding their eyes from the sun’s harsh glare. So why do we sunbathe and go outdoors without using SPF, increasing our risk of developing skin cancer? “Obey your instinct” says each ad — while a girl on a swing, a sunbather and a man in direct sunlight shield their eyes from the sun. See the ads here, here and here, created by Y&R Peru.

Grey New York is capitalizing on the popularity of the mini-giraffe shown in its latest TV campaign featuring the Russian mogul who wants for nothing, no matter how excessive and unnecessary. Enter PetiteLapGiraffe.com, a site run by Sokoblovsky Farms, Russia’s finest purveyors of miniature lap giraffes. The faux site has a mini-giraffe cam, pictures of calves and a waiting list for your own mini-giraffe. Copy is written in broken English, similar to how the Russian mogul communicates in the TV ads. Upon adding myself to the waiting list, I received this message:”I make #331,747 on waiting list for own premium Petite Lap Giraffe. A dream made true. If you like, you buy at Sokoblovsky Farms.” I have a long wait ahead of me.

Regardless of the weather and road conditions Citroën faces in “Dominoes,” the vehicle handles itself quite nicely. Each road factor or season is a domino that falls to the ground as Citroën approaches. The car drives through autumn leaves, rain, snow and high altitudes. See the ad here, created by Agence H, Paris, with visual effects and animation by Psyop.

adidas launched “Bring it on,” a TV spot starring Cricket player Sachin Tendulkar. “It’s a young man’s game. He has to reinvent himself,” says the voiceover while Tendulkar truly “brings it” to his exercise routines, clearly showing that age is just a number. Did I mention that he’s an ancient 37? The spot ends with the Tendulkar suiting up for his latest match and directing viewers to adidas’ Cricket page. Watch the ad here, created by TBWA/India.

Random iPhone App of the week: Climb every mountain, while sitting around, playing with your iPhone. Helios Interactive Technologies created an augmented reality app for MINI. Users can take pictures of a superimposed virtual MINI Countryman in their garage, on a mountain, near a waterfall, or on the end of their toothbrush. Users can choose one of four different colors and configurations of the MINI Countryman. The app is available for free in the App Store.

Amy Corr is managing editor, online newsletters for MediaPost. She can be reached at amyc@mediapost.com.

Changes

from Labov & Beyond:

Out with the old

One of your best salespeople is leaving. You just found out a longtime customer is now doing business with your competitor. You don’t agree with a change a manufacturer has made to a product you’ve been selling for years.

These are the kinds of trials that give change a bad name. You can sit around and lament about your bad luck, think back to the good ole days or decide what, if anything, you can do about your situation.

For us pessimists this is a hard thing to do, but you could also consider there might be a bright side to the situation.

Maybe you’ll find a salesperson who’s even better than the one you lost. Maybe that customer wasn’t doing you any favors if you’d done everything you could to make him happy, but he still wasn’t satisfied or appreciative. Maybe you should give that product change a chance before you write it off.

It’s hard to think of the positive when a seemingly negative change is staring you in the face, but just consider it might be a blessing in disguise.

Wednesday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & read:

Research

by Sarah Mahoney

When it comes to Gen Y, demographers tend to be a little unkind: “Entitled” and “impatient” are words that come up often. But as these Millennials face major life changes — with the leading edge moving into parenthood — it’s time to rethink some of those labels. Nancy Robinson, VP/consumer strategist and insight director on Millennials for Iconoculture, a trend-watching firm in Minneapolis, tells Marketing Daily how this crowd is changing. …Read the whole story >>

Automotive

by Karl Greenberg

Nissan Motor’s Infiniti luxury brand is heading way south. The company will begin sales in Australia starting in 2012, according to the company. Infiniti, which topped luxury imports in growth numbers last year in the U.S. market, is heading to the continent after having expanded into Western Europe, Asian markets and South America. …Read the whole story >>

Beverages

by Karlene Lukovitz

The strategic unification is a necessary next step for the brand, given its large and expanding global footprint, and is also designed to enhance marketing productivity, said Coca-Cola Company EVP and chief marketing and commercial officer Joe Tripodi, during a press Webcast Tuesday announcing the campaign. …Read the whole story >>

Electronics

by Aaron Baar

As part of the nearly month-long program, Haier has launched a microsite, www.smarterlifebetterplanet.com, which will feature a new video featuring an environmental advocate or expert every day. In the videos, each of which is less than two minutes long, the participants challenge consumers to do something small every day to help the environment. …Read the whole story >>

Spirits

by Tanya Irwin

The animated campaign, which includes six 30-second and 15-second spots, is from Los Angeles-based M&C Saatchi, which recently won the business. The ads are part of a fully integrated marketing program which includes print and online advertising, social media, and consumer-generated point of sale materials. …Read the whole story >>

Food

by Karl Greenberg

The study gives Subway the nod as “Quick Serve Restaurant Brand of the Year,” followed by Dairy Queen, Wendy’s and McDonald’s. But the companies whose brand equity is heading up are not burger places: Domino’s Pizza, KFC restaurants and Taco Bell all saw positive movement. …Read the whole story >>

Radio…Still Not Dead


Good thing too, since that’s the business I’ve spent the most time in since my teen years.

In a Renaissance for Radio, More Listeners Are Tuning In

Radio stations are receiving a surprisingly strong signal from audiences and the financial markets this year, even as they face intensifying competition from satellite and Web-based audio services including Sirius XM Satellite Radio XM and Pandora.

An average of 241.6 million people 12 and older listened to conventional radio stations each week last year, an increase of 2.1 million over 2009 — and up 4.9% vs. 2005, according to an annual study that media and marketing research company Arbitron released Monday.

“Radio is much stronger than the general perception of it has been,” says Carol Hanley, Arbitron’s executive VP of sales and marketing.

The report follows the announcement this month of the biggest radio deal in years: Cumulus Media, the No. 2 station owner, agreed to buy No. 3 Citadel Media for cash and stock that values Citadel at $2.4 billion.

Cumulus will have 572 stations if federal antitrust officials approve the union. That would trail industry leader Clear Channel, with more than 850 stations.

The industry still faces challenges. From 2000 through 2010, teens and young adults cut their radio-listening time in half as they became infatuated with the Internet, cellphones and video games, Edison Research reported.

Yet stations appear to be getting a lift from their ability to adapt to local tastes. Radio owners “can shift their programming very quickly,” says Howard Bass, senior media and entertainment partner with consulting firm Ernst & Young. “That’s why they’re so resilient.”

That has helped radio appeal to the growing Hispanic population. The number of Hispanic radio listeners increased 1.1 million last year, Arbitron says, as stations picked up on programming formats for Spanish-speaking audiences.

For example, Texas now has 154 Spanish-language stations, up from 25 in 2000.

The Hispanic audience “has grown immensely,” Bass says. “Clearly the listenership has followed the trends.”

Meanwhile, radio is benefiting financially from this year’s stronger-than-expected market for local ads. Radio’s biggest customers, automakers and dealers, are introducing 65 models in 2011, up from 60 last year and 40 in 2009, Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker says.

“As these local dealers become more (economically) sure-footed, you’re just going to see incremental growth in that category,” Cumulus CEO Lewis Dickey told Wall Street analysts last week.

The auto industry accounted for $1.8 billion of radio’s $17.3 billion in ad sales last year, according to the Radio Advertising. The industry total was up 6% vs. 2009.

(Source: USA Today, 03/22/11)

Mess with Success

There’s a couple different schools of thought.

1. We are successful, don’t change anything.

2. We are successful, but we need to change to stay ahead.

The question really is what do you want to change and why.

Drew explains:

Your logo is a business tool

Posted: 28 Mar 2011 05:34 AM PDT

78482601
Your logo is a tool, not art

We were sitting in the conference room the other day with a new client. He’s been in business for many years and is very successful. He’s ready to reallyramp up his marketing and tackle some lofty goals.

And we’re ready to help. (After all, that’s what we do)

He went on to tell us that he really doesn’t like his logo. It doesn’t tell his company’s story very well, it’s a little expected and in his opinion, it isn’t very attractive. So the first project he’d like us to launch is a logo re-design.

I took a deep breath and told him no.

Now… granted I said it with more words…and nicer. But basically I said this:

  • No logo is going to tell the whole story of your business
  • You have over a decade of equity in your current logo
  • Your current logo isn’t costing you any customers or any money (no one’s not choosing you because of your logo)
  • Your current logo is fine. It’s not perfect and we’d be able to come up with something better. But not so much better that it will line your pockets.
  • Remember a logo cost is far beyond just the cost of designing a new logo. There are legal costs to register it, you have to re-print all of your business cards, letterhead, etc., your staff’s uniforms would need to be changed and your trucks would need to be re-vinyled. Then, there’s building signage etc, etc. etc.

I summed it up with… if the only reason you want to change your logo is because you don’t like it, it’s not a good enough reason. It’s not a piece of art you choose to put in your home, it is a business tool and your current logo is doing the job adequately.

I also told him, it was his company. And if he hated the logo that much and he gritted his teeth every day when he saw it and it haunted him in his dreams — we’d design him a new logo. But that if it was my money — I wouldn’t spend it there.

Do not get me wrong. A logo is a very important part of your marketing effort. Most logos suck and should be changed. But his didn’t. And it shouldn’t be changed for the subjective reason of his personal taste.

Your logo is a business tool. If it’s doing a good job — leave it be.